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SMAD. An Organ of Student Opinion. 1935. Volume 6. Number 17.

What of the Next Extrav! Does "Cocktail Party" Give a Lead?

What of the Next Extrav! Does "Cocktail Party" Give a Lead?

Cangratulations Dramatic Club! You gave us good entertainment, and plenty of it, in exchange for our shillings towards the Building Fund. We're willing to strike the bargain any time you choose. We liked the singing, the dancing of the "vivacious virgins," the magic, he banter, the dryness of "Sackcloth" at a "wet" show, everything—we gulped it down without one wry face.

It should be obvious to the most unmathematical and unimaginative that a few lines comment on each 'stunt' would soon outrun the front page of a "Smad" or even the ingenuity of a Sackcloth—so it can't be done. And after all, what is more ephemeral than a "Smad" reporter's wisecrack. Its death-knell is sounded with the first common room chuckle. So let us discuss something a little more permanent.

The most interesting thing arising from "Cocktail Party" is 'Does it give a line on future Extravs.?' Many people who should know consider that it does. Next year an Extrav. has to be produced, but from where and how? Here is a problem success of "Cocktail Party" has suggested that perhaps it would be better if future Extravs. conformed somewhat to its pattern. To aid in the solution of this problem "Smad" has interviewed eight people whose opinions are of value in view of their experience. Each of them offers his opinion on the question, and it seems from the replies that the opinion of people who matter is that we should move towards the ideal indicated by "Cocktail Party."

Jack Aimers.

"We should seek a compromise between one long show and a revue," said Jack Aimers. He maintained that future Extravs. should be of the following form; three shows, each of 25 minutes duration (independently produced), interspersed with short skits, ballets, etc., which would last for just a few minutes.

Jack Carrad.

"An Extravaganza, comprising a series of lightning sketches, the longest lasting at the outside 25 minutes, with items interspersed, should be a definite improvement on one long show. It is too much to expect one student to write a full length show, and it is equally difficult to produce"

Mr. & Mrs. Priestley.

"One of the best shows of its type I have seen up here," was Don. Priestley's opinion of "Cocktail Party," "and a splendid way to find Extrav talent." "What do you consider is the ideal form for Extrav.," "Smad' asked?"

"Three short revues with two interludes or sketches," was the considered Priestley opinion. "When there are a number of capable authors, it is a pity to waste some of the talent by leaving the job to only one."

"Do you favour women in Extravs" we asked? This was perhaps an unfair question to the husband of an actress and after a glance in the direction of his better half, he answered unhesitatingly, "Yes."

P. J. G. Smith.

"I do not think the Extrav. should be tied down to any particular form, but it should be one which permits all interested to co-operate. Whether it be three, four, five, or six one-act plays or along the lines of a variety show should be a matter for arrangement among those willing to take a hand. Individual authorship places too much upon the individual and, incidentally, leaves the College too much at the mercy of the individual."

Dorothea Tossman.

"I am not in favour of abandoing the idea of one long Extrav. altogether, but necessity may drive us to do so at least temporarily. And perhaps it is desirable that we should do so. Considered from the view-point of production, interest, and revenue, the idea of having a number of short items is, I think, preferable to that of having one long show."

Carl Watson.

"Sackcloth" pondered a moment and then began: "Shows consisting of short items after the style of 'Cocktail Party' seem to me to be the right idea for future Extravs. Shows on this line make for better direction and have a greater appeal to the public, which means more bricks.

Cedric Wright.

"The essence of a University Extrav. is plenty of movement and colour, both in wardrobe and lighting. I think the show should be divided into two parts. The first should have two half-hour revues, separated possible by an interlude and after the interval should be the piece de resistance; something like 'Medea and Soda.' I am quite convinced also that we can't do a vaudeville show properly except in the opera House."

The Law Ball.

The Law Ball was the most successful for years and as a result the Building Fund will benefit from the "fees, emoluments and profits" to the extent of approximately £20. Although Baron Jackson and committee were seen looking distraught at times the four hundred people who attended the "Supreme Court of Revelry" seemed to enjoy themselves to the full. The Law Students' Society and Law Faculty Club are to be congratulated on their efforts which have resulted in such a splendonation to the Building Fund.